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WYLA is open to Wisconsin youth who will have completed either 9th or 10th grade by June 2012.

"I wanted to become a leader because I know that the world is not going to change itself." –WYLA Student

WYLA youth strive to be leaders by modeling the way all of the time. Students do not need to be in leadership positions to attend, and students at all levels of experience and interest in leadership positions are invited. The Academy will meet each student where they are in life’s journey and help them discover their leadership voices.

What youth are saying about WYLA

What is leadership?

"Leadership is being a role model for others to inspire them to overcome challenges to achieve a common goal." –WYLA Student

Leadership is a personal journey, one based on values, goals and virtues. WYLA aims to provide students with the tools that enable them to define for themselves what leadership looks like. By developing a leadership style based on their own values, students leave the week-long summer camp with skills to create positive change in their lives and the people around them.

Why do you want to be a leader?

"I don’t 'want to be a leader.' I am one." –WYLA Student

Leaders come from all different backgrounds. Some self-identify, some are given direction by those around them. The desire to be a leader comes from within and is strengthened through positive reinforcement and encouragement. After the week-long summer program, this encouragement comes from fellow WYLA youth and students’ personal WYLA mentors.

How will you be a leader?

"By modeling the way ALL of the time. I will be a leader everywhere that I am." –WYLA Student

WYLA helps students see that being a leader is a lifelong commitment that doesn’t just happen in structured settings. Through physical, emotional and intellectual challenges, WYLA students discover that leadership opportunities are abundant in every aspect of their lives.

How has WYLA given you confidence as a leader?

"I was able to find the strength within myself through encouragement from people here to step out and face the challenge in front of me." –WYLA Student

"Seeing other’s virtues and strengths throughout the summer camp helped me to expand and better embody my own virtues." –WYLA Student

The process of discovering leadership skills is a personal one, and each student goes through their own unique transformation. Throughout the process, students learn from each other’s transformations. By growing together, students and WYLA staff develop a special bond based on growth, discovery and development.

How will you use what you learned to be an effective leader?

"I will encourage others to act, and seek out opportunities that require leadership and outreach." –WYLA Student

The Academy will build stronger, more capable and compassionate youth leaders across Wisconsin. Students will cultivate the tools to be leaders, not only in the current context of their lives, but also for their futures.

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